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Development of an Online Entrepreneurial Training Course for Sustainable Technology

Knowledge about how to start a successful business is a critical barrier to success, according to 84% of entrepreneurs surveyed by the Kauffman Foundation. While many of today’s business leaders have MBAs, tomorrow’s challenge is to make entrepreneurship approachable for non-business audiences, including designers. Innovation is critical to successful enterprises and designers are particularly well-suited for innovation and entrepreneurship endeavors given their creative leanings. Yet many opt-out based on preconceived notions of what it means to a “businessperson,” or worse, plunge ahead without a framework for building a successful enterprise. With the support of NCIIA, the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD) is developing a new entrepreneurial training course to provide the principles and practices of Lean Startup methodologies to the graduate students of MCAD’s Sustainable Design program. The paper covers the challenges faced and methods employed to teach entrepreneurship to a design audience in an online environment.

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